It’s that time of year when even the most heat-loving San Antonians start to dream of escaping to the mountains — if only they weren’t spending half their paycheck going out to eat. No one wants to turn on their stove this time of year, but you don’t have to blow all your ducats every meal. These Alamo City eateries offer plenty of meals for under $10, helping you save up for that cool summer vacation.
With few menu items over $10, it’s next to impossible to rack up a huge tab at this friendly ice house. The spicy Nashville hot wings are a must and the salt 'n’ pepper fries are a moment of pure bliss, but it's hard to beat the fried bologna sandwich. The kid’s favorite grows up with thick slices of bologna and a sharp pimento cheese wedges between two slices of toast. And because it sells at $6.50, you’ll have room left in your budget for a second beer.
The atmosphere at this Medical Center mainstay is as spare as the matter-of-fact name, but who cares when you can take a tour of the world’s sandwich arts so cheaply? The options — all served with a soup or salad and chips or a pastry — are overwhelming, but you can’t go wrong with the cross-cultural fajita au poulet avec fromage (that’s chicken with cheese for all the monolinguists) or the Chef’s Continental, a take on Vietnamese bánh mì with housemade pâté and fresh fixings.
Loncheria El Popo
You spent $15 at lunch? Who are you, a Rockefeller? At this colorful dive, you can feast for less than $3, and that includes the tax. Opt from delicious sandwiches made with shredded veal, hot dogs, or ham and cheese or opt for a classic cheeseburger. Add a bag of chips for only a buck. Whatever way, you won’t have to have a light wallet to have a full stomach.
Moshe’s Golden Falafel
Life is full of difficult choices. While we can’t help you with the dilemma of just how to build your bowl, we can assure you that you are on the right path if you eat at Moshe’s. Whether you order a pita or plate, go for classic green or spicy red falafel, or add some swag from the salad bar, you’ll leave feeling, well, golden. Did we mention none of the dishes will dip into your reserves?
A steaming bowl of ramen may not be the first thing you crave during the sweltering heat, but this Pearl food hall vendor has plenty of lighter fare to cure the summertime blues. For $8, get a bowl of street corn mazeman, a no-broth ramen featuring kimchi mayo, loads or parmesan, crispy garlic, fresh scallion, and Tajin togarashi, a Japanese spice blend kicked up a notch. A side of $4 edamame slathered in miso popcorn butter completes your budget feast.